rapidly ascending, when a terrific enfilading fire from the enemy, quickly massed at that point, suddenly rose up, mostly taking effect on this regiment. It received and returned it unflinchingly, and pressed on until some of its skirmishers were near the summit, and the regiment was within less than 25 yards of it. But the enemy, strongly re-enforced, was overpoweringly superior, with every advantage of position. The skirmishers were repulsed, and the Seventh, having lost its gallant leader, Lieutenant-Colonel Crane, 12 out of 13 of its officers, and nearly one-half its men taken into action being disabled, was retired. It moved back slowly and sullenly, delivering its volleys with coolness, and bringing off as many of its wounded as possible.
The One hundred and forty-seventh Pennsylvania, on the extreme left, gaining a position near the top simultaneous with the Seventh, had the advantage of protection behind a ledge of rocks, but both flanks of this regiment being endangered by the falling back of the Seventh, and a force of the enemy advancing down the mountain, which would render the position untenable, it was ordered to retire slowly. In good order, with parting volleys, it descended half way down the hill, where both regiments formed in a sheltered position, which they maintained until the enemy was routed.
In this last movement the brave Creighton fell mortally wounded, and the command of the brigade devolved on Colonel Ahl, of the Twenty-eighth Pennsylvania. The regiments on the right, Twenty-eighth Pennsylvania and Sixty-sixth Ohio, well protected, held their ground about 40 yards below the crest line, engaged with the enemy, but, owing to the overpowering strength of their antagonists, they could not advance without almost total annihilation. I ordered them to form on the line below.
This veteran brigade, the heroes of many well-fought fields, had, for two and a half hours, done all that brave and redoubtable men could do, sustaining the concentrating fury of an intense battle, with an enemy who had opposed them with overwhelming numbers from an almost impregnable position.
During this action Carlin's brigade, of Palmer's corps, arrived and formed on the railroad in rear of the First Brigade, in reserve.
As soon as Creighton's command moved under orders to the left, Cobham's little brigade was brought up and massed behind a large stone depot on the confines of the town toward the ridge, to protect him from the rebel fire, while he was held for an emergency. Ireland was halted in reserve, 400 yards back, in the main street of Ringgold.
Cobham had remained but a few minutes under shelter, when the enemy, with vigorous fire musketry and artillery, was pressing back some of Osterhaus' regiments on the right. Cobham was sent to his support, and, moving upon the double-quick, crossed the railroad under severe fire, and took position in front on a mound to the left of the railroad and gap, facing the ridge. The impetuous advance of the rebel line was checked and hurled back toward the ridge, and sharpshooters were sent out to operate against those of the enemy who, in large numbers, were active in our front, and the men were ordered to lie down.
Ireland's brigade was brought up as soon as Cobham's was sent to the relief of the right, and it was disposed in column of regiments, en masse, behind the stone depot. The fight raged in front, and at 10.40